Twelve days after trade, A's lose Rosario to waiver claim


Twelve days after trade, A's lose Rosario to waiver claim

OAKLAND -- For the A's and their assiduous general manager Billy Beane, player flipping has become a bit of a sport. On Monday, Oakland's efforts to tweak their roster may have back fired slightly.

The A's have announced that pitcher Sandy Rosario has been claimed off waivers by the Boston Red Sox just four days after the A's sent Graham Godrey to Boston as the player to be named later in the trade to acquire Rosario, and 10 days after Rosario was designated for assignment, and 12 days after he was acquired in the first place.

Round and round it goes, where it stops? We sort of know. For now, the Rosario merry-go-round stops in Boston -- where it began in the first place. The A's lose Godfrey to the Red Sox, and get the $20,000 waiver fee in return.

Rosario, 27, was claimed by the Boston Red Sox from the Miami Marlins on October 17. Last season he put up spectacular numbers in Triple-A, but struggled in four appearances with the Marlins before going on the disabled list with a strained right quadriceps.

The reliever had a 1.04 ERA and was a perfect 16-for-16 in save opportunities in Triple-A. He struck out 24 batters and walked just two in 26 innings. With Miami however, he allowed six runs in four appearances.

-- When the A's designated Rosario for assignment on November 30, I made this joke on Twitter:

Sandy Rosario's run with the #Athletics almost as impressive as Edwin Encarnacion's days with the A's in 2010.

— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattCSN) December 1, 2012

That led to a fun conversation with some of my favorite A's followers about players that had very short stints with the A's. You can see the conversation here.

Aside from Encarnacion, the names, Michael Barrett, Ryan Langerhans, and Phil Humber came up.
-- Barrett was acquired December 15, and traded the same day.
-- Langerhans was acquired April 29, 2007 and traded three days later.
-- Encarnacion was claimed off waivers on November 12, 2007 and granted free agency December 2 of the same year.
-- Humber -- who later tossed a perfect game for the White Sox -- was in the A's organization from December 16, 2010 to January 18, 2011.

If you can think of any more A's short-timers feel free to submit them in the comments section.

-- The A's would like me to pass along this note. On December 13, from 5-6 p.m. you can get autographs from relievers Ryan Cook and Sean Doolittle at the Bank of America on 1330 North Main Street in Walnut Creek. You have to bring a donation of five non-perishable food items. It is for a good cause, and Cook and Doolittle are two nice guys, so show up and get some stuff signed. Be sure to show up early because it will be limited to the first 150 people.

A's GM Forst feels passion of fans, will not second-guess decisions

A's GM Forst feels passion of fans, will not second-guess decisions

A’s general manager David Forst says he has a stack of strongly worded letters from fans who grow frustrated with many of the team’s personnel moves.

That comes with the territory of running a major league front office. But Forst also said, during a wide-ranging interview on the latest A’s Insider Podcast, that honest critiquing must come from within office walls.

“You do want to do some self-evaluation and self-assessing,” Forst said. “What I don’t do, I don’t go back and second-guess decisions, whether it’s a trade or a signing. I don’t sort of hypothetically think, ‘Well, what if we hadn’t done this,’ because it’s not a good use of anybody’s time. What you do have to do is make sure the process that led to that decision is sound and a good one.”

Certainly one of the most scrutinized A’s moves of recent history was their signing of designated hitter Billy Butler to a three-year $30 million contract in November 2014. That turned out to be a costly mistake, with Butler being released in September with one year left on his deal and the A’s still on the hook for roughly $10 million. Forst acknowledged how poorly that decision worked out but sticks by the initial motivation to sign Butler.

“Look, Billy Butler didn’t go the way we expected, and that’s one that gets brought up a lot,” Forst said. “But I think back to the time when we made that decision to sign him, and what we were projecting Billy to do. It was very clear what our team needed. Again, going into 2015, coming off the wild card that year, we still felt like this was a team that could compete for a division title. So all the things that went into the decision, ultimately I will stand by.”

Forst spoke frankly about several other topics during the podcast. Regarding fans’ frustration about seeing so many high-profile players traded:

“I’ve got a stack of letters on my desk, the substance of which I can’t repeat on the air,” he said with a smile. “… But there’s passion. And I know we have a fan base that cares, and that’s really a good place to be.”

Forst said the A’s definitely will pursue starting pitching this offseason, despite the fact that 1) he’s very optimistic about the crop of young pitching Oakland has developed, and 2) he believes Sonny Gray will bounce back from a poor 2016 season. The GM takes encouragement that Gray made a full physical recovery from a strained forearm.

“Am I going to get the Cy Young (caliber pitcher) from Day 1? I don’t know. But I think there’s a confidence that this was an aberration, this whole year, more than anything else.”

Crisp homers as Indians shut out Blue Jays to advance to World Series


Crisp homers as Indians shut out Blue Jays to advance to World Series


TORONTO -- A most unlikely pitching performance helped put a most unexpected team into the World Series.

Rookie Ryan Merritt coolly delivered a lead to the Andrew Miller-led bullpen and the Cleveland Indians won their first pennant since 1997, blanking Toronto 3-0 Wednesday in Game 5 of the AL Championship Series.

Cleveland, which has never hosted a World Series opener, will play Game 1 at Progressive Field on Tuesday night against either the Chicago Cubs or Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Indians will try to boost what's already been a magical year in Cleveland after LeBron James and the Cavaliers earned the city's first sports championship since 1964. The Indians' title drought dates to 1948.

The Dodgers led the Cubs 2-1 going into Game 4 of the NLCS on Wednesday night. Cleveland didn't play either team this season.

With all of 11 major league innings under his belt, Merritt took the mound and looked just like a seasoned vet. The 24-year-old lefty retired the first 10 batters and allowed only two hits before being pulled after 4 1/3 innings.

Then it was up to Cleveland's tireless relievers to hold a three-run lead.

Miller again did most of the heavy lifting, pitching 2 2/3 innings, and Cody Allen pitched the ninth for the save. Winner Bryan Shaw worked an inning before Miller came in.

Carlos Santana and Coco Crisp homered for the Indians.